First off, the TV show is MUCH better than the book in terms of character development, extended story lines and basically…..everything else. If you live under a rock or are uncultured, “Sex and the City” mainly focuses on Carrie (a writer) and her experiences with love in the Big Apple.
What I admired was how relatable the chapters were in terms of the trials and tribulations Carrie had to face. Within the first few pages she learns, “relationships in New York is all about detachment.” Much like real life, if a young man lives in the city and is incredibly handsome/successful he is most likely not looking for a serious relationship. Women make the mistake of falling hard for these types, which often lead to a broken heart, bottomless pits of wine and a dash of hostile feelings. I agree with Carrie’s idea of detachment, especially when you are in your early twenties. I’m not saying you should NEVER fall in love when you’re young but living in a big city when you’re 22, 23, 24 years old, you’re still a kid. More often than not you’re going to change significantly within those years (your idea of love, needs, tastes, personality, etc). A relationship will often fail due to growing apart. Again, I’m not saying all relationships end for this reason but from experience though myself and friends, that’s what typically happens.
“We were hard and proud of it and it hadn’t been easy to get to this point – this place of complete independence…It had taken hard work, loneliness, and the realization that, since there might never be anyone there for you, you had to take care of yourself in every sense of the word.”
Agree or disagree but detachment is an important lesson to learn when you’re single in your 20’s. You should never settle or dedicate your life to someone who won’t be able to grow with you. If your gut says “this guy is a bad idea,” most likely right. I read once how “a man is never too busy to call a woman they are really into. ‘Busy’ is another word for ‘asshole.’ ‘Asshole’ is another word for the guy you’re dating.” If he’s choosing to not make a simple effort that would put your mind at ease, then he’s not worth it. *insert sassy triple snap here*
The book also discussed taboo subjects such as swingers, threesomes, and cheating. I’ll leave that up for you to read and reflect. All I’ll just say is that I don’t know if I have been educated or corrupted on these subjects through this novel.
Of course, it wouldn’t be “Sex and the City” without the relationship between Carrie and Mr. Big. It’s an emotional roller coaster (wouldn’t be their love if it wasn’t). I was reading this book while on the train, coming home from a long, stressful day. Coincidentally in the chapter I was reading that Carrie had the same mind-set as myself (worrying about the future, etc). When she got home, Carrie saw that Mr. Big sent her flowers and a card saying, “Everything will be ok. Love, Mr. Big.” I thought the gesture was so sweet. Gosh, I want someone to send me flowers! Since that probably won’t happen in the foreseeable future, I imagined being Carrie for a brief 30 seconds and it instantly made me feel better. Thanks Big.
(SPOILER ALERT BELOW!)
By the end of the book, Carrie and Mr. Big fought and made-up about a zillion times over love, marriage, and their future together. In the epilogue Bushnell concludes, “Mr. Big is happily married. Carrie is happily single.” Ohhh, such a dramatic ending. Sad, but it’s honest and realistic. If you’re looking for a girly poolside read (quite like Cosmo but in novel form) then I recommend it.
Overall, I’d give this book a solid 5.9/10.